Monday, September 16, 2019

Japan Kantō Winter Drive to Mt Fuji - Part 6 - Last (Tokyo-Singapore)

Departing from Kusatsu, we headed towards Ikaho Onsen to meet our friends for lunch. Coincidentally they were on their way to Kusatsu on the same day we depart! 

Lake Haruna

To reach Ikaho Onsen, we had to pass through Mt Haruna, also known as Mount Akina in Initial D!

Firstly there was Lake Haruna, where we took a little stroll and tried to take a few steps on the frozen waters~ Except for the occasional cars which passed by, there was hardly anyone in the area. 

After Lake Haruna came the main event, the drive from Lake Haruna to Ikaho Onsen is supposed to be the actual route that Initial D creators based their Mt Akina route on. Some kind person has marked the map here

Saturday, September 14, 2019

J’s 2-handed bowling

And so J’s 2-handed bowling journey is officially a go~ 3 weeks ago he got a sort of introduction to 2-handed bowling.

It was a frustrating day for him... crying, tears, anguish... it wasn’t easy to switch from 1-handed to 2-handed... 

What I did since then was to show him videos of Jason Belmonte and Anthony Simonsen. The game of bowling is changing, Singapore Bowling Federation is also putting an emphasis on 2-handed bowling these days...

Today we worked on his finishing and we saw a massive improvement in his timing and balance. It wasn’t an easy 90-minute session and there were a few tears of anguish along the way but I’m happy we could see massive improvements. Let’s see how it goes from here!

Thursday, September 12, 2019

J’s bowling journey Part 2

It has been 2 years since we started J's bowling journey. I am very happy with how far he's come since he's started. Along the way we gave away the 6lb ball and gotten him a new 8lb Columbia 300 White Dot ball from Columbia~


Columbia 300 White Dot


And in this year we've been getting him prepared for the Novice Primary Bowling Challenge!

And so the serious work of getting him ready for the competition started from the beginning of the year...

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Japan Kantō Winter Drive to Mt Fuji - Part 5 (Ryokan Tokinoniwa 季の庭)

On the last day we check-in into 湯宿 季の庭(ときのにわ)Tokinoniwa
[Official Website]. It is an onsen ryokan situated in the southern part of Kusatsu town. They are part of the Kyoritsu Resort Group and their establishments are usually nice and stylish.

After we parked the car and walked into the main hall, the first thing we were told to do was to take off our shoes before we stepped onto the reception area. Initially I thought it was a hassle to take off my shoes and then have to wear them again when we go to the rooms. It was later then I realized that the entire building was covered with tatami mat! 

Monday, September 9, 2019

KOMA Singapore - Review

We made our way over to KOMA Singapore on a Friday evening so see what the hype is all about. Located right next to Marquee, it can be easily identified by a row of Torii (Japanese Gate) at its entrance... Walking through the Torii is like going through a teleportation device and once you get through to the other side the first thing you will see is the bar... and the giant bell hanging behind it!

On both sides of the bar will be the pathway leading into the main dining area. I can't help but feel that it was recreated from a scene in Big Trouble in Little China. (If you don't know that show, go watch it!). The lily-pad panels and lanterns lining the tall ceiling gives you an idea how much thought has been put into the design of the restaurant.

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Japan Kantō Winter Drive to Mt Fuji - Part 4 (Exploring Kusatsu)

One of the key reason why we stayed at Kusatsu Onsen Hotel Village instead of beside the Yubatake was because J wanted to play with snow. The very next morning we woke up early for the buffet breakfast and walked to the snow field of the resort.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Japan Kantō Winter Drive to Mt Fuji - Part 3 (Lake Kawaguchi-Kusatsu)

The amazing Matsumoto Castle...

After Lake Kawaguchi, we were supposed to make a 3.5 hour drive to Kusatsu. However I chose to make a detour to visit Matsumoto Castle. I'm a big fan of Japanese castles and I was not going to miss this as Matsumoto Castle has the oldest castle donjon remaining in Japan.